At Narrative, we are working hard to re-imagine the intersection between photography and furnishings. But it occurred to me that for many people, the concept of putting a photo on furniture or home accessories feels a little foreign. This was quite a revelation, seeing as how I'm well into my second year building Narrative and have what you could mildly call a photo décor obsession!
For those of you that don't share my single mindedness, I thought it may be helpful to walk you through the process we use to create furnishings from photographs. The goal is to take the mystery out of things and show you just how simple and gratifying it can be to transform your favorite photographs into meaningful home decor.
First, of course, it starts with a photo. Any photo of reasonable quality will do (we've created lots of great products from your average cell phone pics!). The most important part of picking a photo - in my humble opinion - is how it makes you feel. The picture can be of anything...a sunset, the mountains, a cityscape, someone you love...any image that inspires emotion and you enjoy gazing upon. (If you'd like more specific tips on choosing a photo, I wrote about that in another blog post here).
In this example, we've started with a gorgeous black and white photo of sunflower fields, taken by our featured guest photographer, Ashley Youkilis.
Next, it's time to decide what type of furnishing you are most excited about. As you will see at the end of this post, we can adapt most photographs into almost any decor item. Once you pick a product from the custom portion of the Narrative website, you simply upload your personal photograph and sit back and relax. The rest of the work is up to us! Here's where the "magic" comes in...
Our team of experts will first prep you photo for print. This includes whatever is needed to make your image look as great as possible on fabric or metal: be it brightening the colors, cropping the image, or photoshopping out that random stranger in the background. Next we adjust your photograph size to perfectly fit whatever furnishing you have selected and then it's off to the printer!
Once we have your custom photo printed fabric or metal in hand, our artists get to work assembling your final creation. All Narrative products are handcrafted locally in San Diego: our custom pillows are hand cut and sewn, our lampshades are handmade from scratch, our clock movements are assembled by hand, and our chairs are individually upholstered by hand. I think you get the gist!
Why such labor intensive construction? We do this to maintain quality on each and every product and to ensure our artists use their critical eye in finishing your custom creation with attention to the very last detail. The Narrative team takes seriously our role in helping you tell your story!
Now comes the fun part. We carefully package your one-of-a-kind product and ship it to your doorstep. Viola! After less than ten minutes on your computer and two-to-three weeks of anticipation, your are the proud co-creator of a gorgeous new custom piece for your home. Is it art? Is it furniture? Who cares?! It's yours and it tells your story beautifully!